The Australian team had a dominating start to their Ashes 2021 campaign against England at Gabba, Perth. The hosts led by newly appointed skipper Pat Cummins registered a thumping 9 wicket victory on just the fourth day of the first Test match. The Aussies outperformed England in all departments. The match, however, brought some injury concerns for the Australian team as opener David Warner could not return to bat after receiving a blow on his chest while facing Mark Wood during his brilliant 94 innings. Warner could not take to the field on Day three of the Test match and his availability in the second-day night Test in Adelaide is still not confirmed.
While the team will be hoping for the southpaw’s availability, former Australian captain Ricky Ponting has backed Usman Khawaja as a replacement if Warner is deemed unfit.
Speaking to cricket.com.au, Pontings said that Khawaja was in good form and while he has not opened the batting for his domestic team in the past few years, he’s done it for the national side. “I think he is experienced enough but the fact he hasn’t done it for a while would be a concern,” Ponting was quoted as saying.
The cloud over warner’s availability grew darker after he was hit at the same spot on his chest while fielding in the second innings.
The second Ashes test between the two arch-rivals is set to be played as a day-night match between December 16 to 20. While England will be hoping to make a comeback, Australia will look to take a bigger series lead with a win in the second match.
Cummins in his debut Test as captain picked 7 wickets including a 5 wicket haul in the first innings. The pacer was appointed as Australia’s red-ball cricket captain after Tim Paine stepped down from his role following an investigation into allegations of unsolicited explicit images sent to a female colleague back in 2017.
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